Indicating that the launch of Comcast’s new online video offering, dubbed Watchable, is drawing closer, Variety located a Web-based demo of the service and uncovered some additional details on what’s to come.
Comcast isn’t commenting on the apparent sneak preview, which looks to have been a beta demo that was left out in the open temporarily. The operator also has not announced a launch date nor confirmed that Watchable will indeed be the name of the service when it goes live.
But a person familiar with the plan said earlier that Watchable is being developed as a curated, ad-supported OTT video service that will be offered on Comcast’s IP-capable X1 platform, which is delivered on set-tops as well as browsers and mobile apps, and will also become available to non-Comcast customers. It’s expected to offer a variety of professional and semi-professional content from several sources, including Maker Studios, GoPro, Fullscreen, Vox Media (now backed by Comcast’s NBCU), AwesomenessTV, The Onion and Vice Media, and NBCU.
From that standpoint, it appears that Watchable will share similarities to go90, Verizon’s coming mobile-first, ad-supported OTT offering.
According to Variety’s spin with Watchable, the service emphasizes “editor-driven curation,” and featured playlists with labels such as “Obama Nation,” “Epic Fails” and “Foodie Delight,” but the demo version (a snap of the home page, posted by Variety, is shown above), did not include a section for user comments.
The report noted that the service initially for the U.S. audiences, though the help section indicates that Comcast is “working to bring Watchable to additional countries.” Other content providers featured on the demo site included the Verge, Popsugar, iFood.tv, Machinima, Smosh, Jukin Media, Discovery Digital and Fox Sports Digital, Variety said.